We recently got the chance to catch up with professional golf player and ambassador for Fairmont The Palm, Dubai and learned not only about his professional career but also his partnership with Fairmont The Palm and plans moving forward.
Can you tell us about yourself?
My name is Daniel Gavins and I was born on 20th March 1991, I have been playing golf as a professional for over 5 years. I started on the Euro-pro Tour and after 2 years, I got to the top 5 so that made me move on to the Challenge tour and then going back to the Euro-pro for the third year, then I managed to get to Tour Score at the end of the year which is a series of stages. For those who may not know, we have 4 rounds in stage 1. Stage 2 is in Spain which has 4 rounds. Stage 3 is the final stage where there are 6 rounds and that is also in Spain. The top 25 at the end get to the European Tour Cup. There is about a 1000 people in all 3 stages. I finished 7th in that tournament so I got a European Tour card last year. I played 15 events, obviously I wanted to play more. It was unfortunate that I couldn't get into the European Tour that year. But it’s experience learned so that is the main thing. There was a lot of travelling involved and getting used to all that kind of travelling in all the different time zones. I love playing in Dubai but there wasn't any tournament at that time. I like playing in Valderrama in Spain and Germany is always nice to go in Munich.
At what age did you start playing golf?
I started playing golf when I was 2 years old. My mum used to play off 10 handicaps and then she had kids so she stopped playing. My dad plays and still plays now. They both recently retired so I think they will start playing a bit more. You can say that golf really is in my genes.
How supportive is your family in your career?
I have huge family support. Since my family are playing themselves and love the game as much as I do, they really support me where ever I go.
How supportive is Fairmont The Palm and tell us about your partnership
Fairmont The Palm are very supportive and our partnership has been great so far!. The team have recently launched a new lifestyle campaign called 'Be. Your. Best', It’s all about supporting guests and residents to the hotel and helping them look and feel ‘their best’ whilst at the resort. In line with that, they are enhancing and collaborating with a lot more sporty and lifestyle individuals and they have been supporting me for the last 2 years. It’s great to be an ambassador with Fairmont The Palm because I like the region and the hotel and i get to play with some great friends out here too.
What challenges have you faced in your career?
The aim for me at the moment is to get back on the European Tour like last year. I think that is kind of the highest level you can go and that will be my number one priority for the next coming season.
Let’s talk about the ‘Track Man Combined Test’
Basically, ‘the track man combined test’ is 60 shots ranging from 60 odds up to driver and you get assessed on how close it is to the line so you always end up in the same kind of target line and obviously the distance. The closer to the distance its saying on the screen, the more points you get. So if you are going for the 60 yard shot and you hit it dead down the line 60 yards that will be a 100 scored. I got a score of 93.0 average which is currently the best. Thousands of people take this challenge. All the top professionals know it’s importance and they have all tried it but I am the current world record holder.
Proud achievements and success stories?
Well, the ‘track man combined test’ world record is definitely one of them. Getting on tour, I would say that was a big achievement too. I have obviously won in the past some of the Euro-pro Tours as well. It was great. I remember it like it was yesterday.
Can you tell us more about your partnership with Fairmont The Palm and how it get together?
As I mentioned, Fairmont The Palm are keen on collaborating with great people who represent their brand and have a nice synergy with the hotel. About 2 years ago, I was approached by the team to work together, to support their active lifestyle and ‘Be your Best’ brand promise and I couldn’t say no. It’s great for me to be able to come out here in Dubai at Fairmont The Palm as it is such a great hotel and playing the golf courses nearby that are just in great condition is amazing. It’s great to be looked after by the team too.
How does it feel to be a part of the Fairmont The Palm ‘family’?
I feel quite privileged to be fair, it’s a great hotel and I just enjoy being here. It’s one of my favorite places to be.
How does Fairmont compare with other chains of hotels?
I always find the staff here is very welcoming and polite. I have stayed in a lot of hotels obviously travelling around the world but nothing really compares to Fairmont. There are a lot of nice hotels around but it’s a personal preference I guess. I think I came at the right point where Fairmont The Palm was looking to really enhance their awareness with the UK in particular. Fairmont as a brand, likes to endorse and support few people who represent the brand well and who genuinely appreciate them. Because they like to support and put passion into people who they believe will go the extra mile and they see this as a long term partnership. Essentially they would like to grow with me and show support in various locations.
Travelling globally, where do you stay?
On the tour last year, I was mainly staying in the players hotels which are listed on the website of the European Golf Tour where they put the best places to stay, these places provided shuttle buses and cars for the players to get to and from the hotel. It’s the easiest thing to do really, to stay where they suggest.
What is your favourite restaurant in Fairmont The Palm?
I have been told that its new Indian restaurant called ‘Little Miss India’ is meant to be amazing so i am going to try that. It launched about a month ago, but I hear it’s brilliant. I’ll have to go there to experience it soon.
What is happening now?
Fortunately for me, I’m going to be enjoying my time here and playing golf with friends and invited guests. Last time I visited, I played at the end of May when it was like 46 degrees which was too hot for me. I am only in Dubai for a week this time. I just came to see the hotel and everyone here and play now the weather is a bit cooler.
Followers and support in this region?
People are so friendly here so I find it easy to get along with people and post about my activities whilst the region. The golf courses are great too, so playing with interesting guests from all around the world is fun for me. Playing competitions day in day out is always quite strict and professional and you never get to have a laugh, so when you play with clients they just take it for fun and it’s good fun for me as well.
Do you have any word of wisdom or a motto for our readers?
If you enjoy it, then you need to stick with it and follow your dreams. I mean if you have got something in you and you want to pursue it then go for it!
My social media has been growing here, I have been posting pictures online every day since the weather is nice and cool. For my golfing, I use Twitter and Instagram. Facebook is more kind of personal so I do not post anything golf related. I have got a few YouTube videos uploaded by a blogger who did a video in Spain at Valderrama where actually he filmed nearest the pin and I actually got a hole in one on the video. So that is a good one to watch. Fairmont The Palm has its own social platforms which they manage in-house. Every time I come here it’s different. Sometimes i’m here for serious golfing and other times I’m here for a nice holiday and to meet golf clients, passing on tips and techniques for golf.. In Dubai, Fairmont The Palm is kind of the most Instagrammable location in regards to fitness and wellness. If you look at their hash tags, you will notice that about 70% of their pictures are fitness or wellness related and they are very well known in this hub.
: Lamborghini Aventador
: I Phone 10
: Ralph Lauren
: 11 degrees clothing
TEXT: ABUBAKAR MOHAMED // PHOTOGRAPHY: FAIRMONT THE PALM